Gifts Today magazine

Las Vegas Market plans education

Introducing a half-day programme of education for gourmet retailers to align with the new C11 launch at the up and coming summer market 

An impressive lineup of gourmet industry leaders will share retail success stories, in-depth shopper insights, trends and analysis at the Summer 2015 Las Vegas Market as part of a new “Gourmet Insights Networking Summit” scheduled for Tuesday, August 4. The half-day educational program complements the launch of the new C11 permanent showroom floor for gourmet housewares, tabletop, gift and specialty food, at the forthcoming Market, running August 2-6, 2015.

“Las Vegas Market will extend its new gourmet offerings for independent housewares retailers beyond exhibits to also include education, and networking opportunities,” said Dorothy Belshaw, president of Gift & Home Décor, International Market Centers. “Response to the new C11 gourmet showcase, from buyers and suppliers alike, clearly addresses a market void in the western region, and represents an important component in the culmination of our three-year strategic plan to reposition Las Vegas Market as the leading furniture, home decor and gift destination in the western United States.”

The Gourmet Insights Networking Summit will feature well-known retail panelists and other industry thought leaders in a lively half-day session of seminars and discussions, including: “State of the Gourmet Industry;” “Effective Merchandising to Drive Impulse Sales;” “What's Next on the Food Scene and How You Can Connect to Increase Your Profits;” and “Social Media: Shopper Engagement as the New Currency.” Programming has been developed in conjunction with The Gourmet Retailer magazine and is tailored specifically to address the issues that are most important to independent gourmet retailers. The event, which is free for retailers, will conclude with a special networking reception.

The Summit kicks off at 1 p.m. with the “State of the Gourmet Industry,” a presentation of exclusive research on the gourmet retail channel conducted for The Gourmet Retailer by Carbonview Research in May 2015. The information will be presented by Anna Wolfe, editor-in-chief of The Gourmet Retailer.

The second session, “Effective Merchandising to Drive Impulse Sales,” from 1:45 to 2:30 p.m., will be a retail panel discussion addressing how to adapt to increasing competition and strategies to stay competitive in today’s price-conscious shopping environment; as well as the impact of showrooming. Panelists include Jill Foucré, owner of Marcel's Culinary Experience in Glen Ellyn, IL; Amy Ruis, owner of Art of the Table in Grand Rapids, MI; and Kathleen Taggart, director of Draeger's HOME Department and Cooking School for the company's four San Francisco Bay Area stores.

A half-hour networking break from 2:30 to 3 p.m. precedes session three, a retail panel discussion, titled “What's Next on the Food Scene and How You Can Connect to Increase Your Profits: A Panel Discussion on Food Trends, Technology, Marketing Tie-ins & More.” Panelists will share their success stories, including how to source local products and how to plan and market money-making events, including in-store cooking demos and hands-on classes. Panelists include Lauren G.R. Johnson, chief operating officer of Newport Avenue Market in Bend, OR; Kati Mora, RD, a registered dietician and founder of ThePlate Boutique, the first nutrition-inspired kitchen store, in Mount Pleasant, MI.; and Doug Poling, senior director for non-perishables, bakery & coffee at the California Bristol Farms specialty store chain.

The fourth and final session, from 4 to 5 p.m. will be a presentation on “Social Media: Shopper Engagement as the New Currency,” addressing the challenges and opportunities of social media and presenting a variety of tangible, take-home strategies specifically relevant to the gourmet retail category. Presenter Bradley Stone Nix is a partner at Brand Chorus, the social business intelligence division of TippingGardner, a leading marketing and brand development firm.

A convivial networking reception will immediately follow the conclusion of the educational programming at 5:30 p.m. All sessions and the reception will be held in the seminar room on C11.

The debut of C11 as a permanent showroom floor for gourmet products will feature more than 50+ major brands showcasing a gift-oriented assortment of housewares and tabletop items, including bakeware, casual tabletop cookware, gadgets, glassware and bar accessories, home and health items, hydration products, kitchen textiles, kitchen tools and gadgets, melamine tableware, publishing/cookbooks, serveware, small electrics and woodenware.

The floor is anchored by high-profile multi-line sales agencies – C. Stephens Inc., The Hub by Carson West Group, The Kitchen Source and Muir Sales – with an assortment of leading gourmet, gift and accessories lines. Notable among these are Andreas; BIA/Danesco; Enclume Pot Racks & Storage; Fagor; Ginkgo; Hammer Stahl Cookware and Cutlery JK Adams; Kitchen Innovations; Kyocera; Le Souk Ceramique Microplane Grace Mfg. Omega Juicers & Blenders Oenophilia; RSVP International; S.A.L.T. Sisters; Simax; Tovolo Vitamix; Zak Designs and Zojirushi America Corp. For a complete list of gift & housewares resources, visit

Beyond vendor support, Las Vegas Market also has forged retail partnerships with two leading organizations – Gourmet Catalog and HTI Buying Group – for the August 2015 launch of C11. Offerings for retail members of each organization include networking and social events, customized market tours, personalized concierge services, buyer scholarships, dynamic educational opportunities and more.

Las Vegas Market is the leading furniture, home decor and gift marketplace in the western U.S., presenting 2,200+ gift, home décor and furniture resources in an unrivaled market destination. Las Vegas Market features thousands of gift, furniture and home décor lines, allowing for cross-category commerce among these industries. The Summer 2015 Las Vegas Market runs August 2-6, 2015, at World Market Center Las Vegas. For more information, visit

About Las Vegas Market and International Market Centers, L.P.
Las Vegas Market is the most comprehensive furniture, home décor and gift market in the United States, presenting a unique cross-section of 2,200+ resources in an unrivaled market destination. With two markets each year, retailers and designers can shop a broad assortment of product from thousands of manufacturers of furniture, mattress, lighting, decorative accessories, floor coverings, home textiles, tabletop, general gift and more — delivering the most complete, cross-category wholesale tradeshow for the furniture, home décor and gift industries in the United States.

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Las Vegas Market is produced by International Market Centers, L.P. (IMC), the world’s largest operator of premier showroom space for the furnishings, home décor and gift industries. International Market Centers owns and operates 12.1 million square feet of world-class exhibition space in High Point, N.C. and Las Vegas. IMC’s mission is to build and operate an innovative, sustainable, profitable and scalable platform for the furnishings, home décor and gift industries. For more information on IMC, visit

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